Archives for Tag: athletes

5 ways that athletes change children’s lives for the better

For many children, their most important role models are their parents and caregivers. However, children look up to a variety of role models to help shape how they behave.

Having a role model helps children to become the person they want to be and inspires them to make a difference. Choosing wisely means that they will be positively influenced and encouraged to be the best person possible not only through their childhood but also into their adult life.

  1. Athletes are fantastic role models

Athletes are able to show the children the power of hard work, perseverance and resilience in a very unique and influential way. Throughout an athletes career, they experience tremendous highs and heart-breaking lows and sharing these encounters with the children helps them to see that failure is inevitable but having the grit and determination to bounce back is what counts.

  1. Physical activity builds the brain

Physical activity is incredibly important to the development, self-esteem and health of primary school children. Unfortunately, 90% of children across the country aren’t getting enough exercise every week. As well as leading to an increase in childhood obesity, a lack of exercise makes it harder for kids to concentrate and can cause pupils to become less confident.

By inviting an athlete into school, the children will see first-hand just how fun and enjoyable physical activity really is. And teachers will find concentration & behaviour has improved as they return to their classrooms!

  1. Athletes are inspirational even for “non-sporty” children

It’s easy to imagine that athletes will only help to inspire and motivate the children that are already physically active and interested in sport. It’s incredible how the athlete can connect with ALL of the children. By the end of the fitness circuit every child will be smiling and trying their best, whether they are naturally sporty or not. The circuits are all about simply trying your best.

The messages that the athletes give to the children are also brilliant to any subject at school, any activity or any life decision. Here are just 3 athlete mottos:

  • “Be the best version of you” – Darren Harris, Paralympic Blind Footballer
  • “Dream big!” – Kristian Thomas, Olympic Gymnast
  • “Say yes and deliver.” – Peter Bakare, Olympic Volleyball Player
  1. Raise funds for your school

Not only does inviting an athlete into school truly inspire the children, it can also help to raise money to improve physical activity at school and create a lasting legacy. Once the children have been inspired by the athlete, they are often enthused to try new activities. Having some new sports equipment can be a great way to promote different activities at school and maintain the momentum. Sports for Schools have raised over £4.5 million pounds for PE equipment to date, and last year, 70% of schools were left with an anything from £300 to £5,000 to spend!

  1. Create a memory to last a lifetime

It’s amazing how the children will forever remember the day that an athlete came to visit school. Even now when we speak to teachers, they remember the day that Kriss Akabusi or another household athlete name came to their school and inspired them. Many of the messages that the athletes give are similar to those that are taught in schools everyday but the power of an athlete delivering it is exceptionally powerful.

“An experience the children will remember for years to come, very inspiring!

Frederick and his assistant were brilliant with the children. They loved the exercises it was so good seeing them enjoying the physical activity. Even those children who often find this difficult were participating and enjoying it. The assembly was also extremely inspiring for the children as Frederick was very clear and passionate about moving forward and continue to put effort in even when it feels as though the tide is against you. Very impressed!”

If you want to get the kids at your school inspired and find them an incredible role model to look up to, take a look round our site today or get in touch with a member of our team on 01223 792200.


6 ways in which Athletes can inspire your school as we exit lockdown

Returning to school is vital for children’s education and for their wellbeing, while the risk to children themselves of becoming severely ill from COVID-19 is very low.

In numbers, 2 deaths from COVID-19 have been recorded across England and Wales out of 10.7 million under 15s, so that’s a chance of 1 in 5.3 million; that means COVID-19 is 7 times less risky for children than the 2017-18 seasonal flu.

In the meantime, there are so many negative health impacts of being out of school. So, for the vast majority of children, the benefits of being back in school far outweigh the very low risk from COVID-19.

Whilst children seem to be largely immune from the virus, they are not immune from the broader impacts on our society and economy. It is even more important now to lift and inspire children to achieve their potential and be the best they can be.

  1. Athletes are fantastic role models

Athletes are able to show the children the power of hard work, perseverance, grit and resilience in a very unique and influential way. Sports for Schools athletes are all of very high calibre: They’ve all represented their country at one of the major games (Olympics/Paralympics, World Champs, European Champs, Commonwealth Games or Invictus Games).

The whole school will take part in a fun fitness circuit led by the athlete and a sportivater (this can easily be done in bubbles with no equipment required).

The athlete will then deliver motivational talks in mini assemblies (or classroom visits if preferred). They don’t just talk about competing; they explain the challenges they have faced, and deliver highly motivating messages about trying your best, working hard, and leading a healthy life.

  1. Events can take place outside

Children LOVE being outside and there are many health benefits from being outside. The risk of transmission is also considerably lower outdoors and lack of space is much less of an issue.

I know what you’re thinking…what about the weather?! But how many times does it actually rain or snow so much that you can’t be outside? Think back to the past 4 weeks of going to work – how often did you actually get wet? I imagine the answer is less than you first thought.

  1. No equipment is necessary

The beauty of the fitness circuit, is that absolutely no equipment is needed which can help considerably with cleaning procedures. The Athlete and sportivater will simply use some tape (that they will bring!) to separate the exercise stations.

  1. Online sponsorship

Since lockdown, we’ve all discovered there’s a digital solution for just about everything these days; running fundraising events is no exception. More digital means less social contact, so encourage the parents to set up an online fundraising page where they can easily share the page with friends and family and learn more about the visiting athlete.

  1. Self-certification

Government guidance will be followed throughout to minimise the risk of transmission of COVID-19. Athletes and sportivaters will also provide self-certification on arrival (along with their DBS and ID as always) and will practice good hygiene with regular hand sanitation to reduce any risk.

  1. Virtual events

If you’re still not sure, then how about an ONLINE event?  The great news is that the whole school can take part (wherever they are, whether in school or at home!). All you need is a mobile device or computer.

The athlete will deliver a fun fitness circuit, give a brief inspirational talk, and host Q&A all ONLINE. The event is carefully moderated, and as always with children, we’ve found the Q&A to be the best!


Here’s some recent feedback from a school who hosted a virtual event during lockdown:

“With everything going on at the moment and the anxiety the children are feeling, this was such a great thing for the children to experience, there was a real buzz after the event. 

Overall, I wouldn’t hesitate for a moment to do another event like that again. It was engaging, educational, interesting and for the pupils to have Olympians training them will truly inspire them.” (Pentland Primary School)

If you want to get the kids at your school inspired and motivated to be more active, take a look round our site today or get in touch with a member of our team on 01223 792200.


Sports For Schools launched in Scotland!

Our most recent athletic additions to the SFS team are GB Swimmer Caitlin McClatchey, GB Hammer Thrower Chris Bennett, GB Judo Champion Theo Spalding and GB para-athlete Jo Butterfield. We can’t wait to see these inspiring athletes visiting schools, doing fitness circuits, and are eager to help motivate the next generation get enthused about sport.

Having started swimming at the age of 3 and training at the age of 11, Caitlin McClatchey is an example of what hard work from a young age can achieve. It’s hard to believe that when she started she was actually no good at swimming! Having competed as an international swimmer for 10 years, and with three Olympic Games up her sleeve as well as a double gold win for Scotland at the Melbourne Commonwealth Games, Caitlin has recently announced her retirement! However, she is still passionate about inspiring the next generation so primary school kids across Scotland should get their swimming costumes at the ready…after a visit from Caitlin, everyone is going to be ready for a splash in the pool!



Scotland’s very own Glaswegian Chris Bennett took up Hammer Throwing in 2005 and has catapulted himself into the top rankings, going from strength to strength with a throw of 74.66m at his most recent competition in Loughborough earlier this year. Having endured many bumps along the way, including the death of his coach last year, Chris is ready to inspire kids to never give up.




Five times British Champion Theo Spalding grew up in East London and took up Judo as a way of keeping out of trouble. He has many achievements tied under his black belt now, as he is also a European Cup Medallist, Commonwealth Champion and 1st place Heart of England Champion! Theo believes that there is so much more to sport than just physical activity and he is ready to inspire the schools of Scotland with his compelling story.


Paralympic Club and Discuss thrower Jo Butterfield had been playing wheelchair rugby since suffering a spinal cord injury in 2011, when she was accepted onto a UK Sport Talent ID programme called ‘Girls4Gold’. Jo embraced the new challenge of transferring to athletics and could never have guessed the change it would bring about in her life! Just after 5 months of getting to grips with her new sport, Jo achieved her first GB selection for the 2014 European Championships and successfully returned home with not only a gold medal but also a new European record! She is now working hard for Rio 2016 and is excited to inspire the Scottish schools with her motto: “If you never quit you have never failed!”

We are really excited to have launched into Scotland with such an incredible line up of athletes. If you would like these inspirational athletes to visit your school, then get in touch quick as events are already getting booked up!

Call the Sports for Schools team now on 01223 792200